First impressions are everything.
At least 1 billion people (that’s 12% of the world’s population) depend on assistive technology while interacting with social media content. Building accessibility into your social media strategy can help you reach a larger audience and capture formerly missed conversions.
It also actively supports more inclusive digital and social environments for all. While these choices may seem small, they can have a big impact on who receives your message and how it’s interpreted.
Choose plain language and high visual contrast.
Creating more accessible social media posts starts with the earliest steps of designing and writing your content.
Maintaining a 4.5:1 color contrast in your designs helps keep each visual element distinct. Avoid using colors to convey meaning (like green = good or red = bad) to ensure your content can be easily understood by those with color, partial, or total blindness.
When writing captions or image text, avoid unnecessary jargon, slang, or abbreviations. For example, instead of referring to “ROI,” write out “return on investment.” Instead of using an expression like “worth their salt,” choose a more specific term like “effective.”
Use title case hashtags.
Writing hashtags in title case (also known as camel case) makes it easier for your audience to quickly identify the relationships between the words you choose. Your goal, after all, is to use a recognizable combination of words to make your post easier to find. Capitalizing each word will help you avoid misinterpretation and confusion. So #WriteYourHashtagsLikeThis instead of #writingyourhashtagslikethis.
Avoid odd text formatting.
Adding custom fonts, out-of-place punctuation, and returns between words may seem like fun ways to convey emotion or make your copy more eye-catching. However, these tricks can negatively impact accessibility. They make it more difficult for screen reading software to accurately describe your text to users who depend on the technology.
Users who are hard of hearing or deaf use subtitles when accessing a wide variety of content, including the videos you post to social media. Adding subtitles to your content creates a more inclusive experience and can have the added benefit of increasing your view lengths, as many users scroll through their feeds without turning on sound.
Include alt text.
Alternative text (alt text) accompanies images in the HTML code of your posts. Screen readers use this text to describe images to visually impaired users. Write your alt text in plain language while being as descriptive as you can to improve their experience.